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Many studies on managing obsolescence and refreshing technology concentrate on replacing hardware to improve the performance of legacy systems. In contrast, the author's research has concentrated on the development of methods that can significantly enhance the performance of legacy systems while requiring few or no hardware modifications. If hardware replacement is allowed, these methods can be leveraged to further improve the upgraded systems. The methods can be characterized either as algorithmic or architectural methods. Algorithmic methods include techniques such as new data compression routines. A previous paper by the author and a fellow researcher has presented data compression routines that are suitable for implementation on legacy MIL-STD-1553 data buses. As expected, these routines where shown to increase the communication throughput. What may be less obvious is that they also increased the time available to perform computation. Architectural techniques include repartitioning of software functions and/or communications to free system resources. This paper presents these and other methods for increasing the performance of legacy avionics systems. The same techniques can also be applied to improve the design of new systems.
Date of Conference: 23-29 Oct. 2009